Siyuihwye class Armored Trader

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Siyuihwye class Armored Trader
Aslan.jpg
A good trader, but when upgraded...
Type: AA Armored Trader
Category ACS
Size 300 Tons
Hull Configuration Wedge Hull
Streamlining Streamlined Hull
Tech Level TL–12
Engineering
Computer Model/2
Jump J-2
Maneuver 2 G
Armaments
Hardpoints 3
Accommodations
Staterooms 1
Personnel
Crew 1
    Officers 1
High/Mid Passengers 0
Payload
Cargo 149.03 Tons
Fuel tank 0 Tons
Construction
Origin Reaver's Deep Sector
Architect Adrian Tymes
Manufacturer various
Year Operational -104
End of Service Examples still operate post-Collapse
Price
Cost MCr97.0935. MCr87.38415 in quantity.
Statistics
Quick Ship Profile AA-CS22
Images
Blueprint Yes
Illustration No
Source
Also see Siyuihwye II class Pirate Ship
Canon Published, fan design
Era Long Night
Reference None
Designed with Mongoose Traveller High Guard rules, but portable to other versions.

The Siyuihwye class Armored Trader is an armed and armored starship.

Description (Specifications)[edit]

From a distance, this ship is indistinguishable from a Siyuihwye II class Pirate Ship so long as it is not doing any externally perceptible thing the Siyuihwye class is incapable of (primarily, exceeding 2 Gs). It is a typical, if heavily armored, Wedge Hull with fuel-scooping wings added, long enough that it is slightly wider than it is long. The wings can be configured to let air flow through deflected downward to improve lift; this is typically only done if there is a significant atmosphere that is neither corrosive nor insidious.

A Siyuihwye class Armored Trader comes with three turrets, which (fresh from the shipyard) come loaded with laser drills to allow quick mining of an asteroid, usually obtaining a full cargo hold in less than 18 hours (a bit less than the length of time a typical Aslan can stay awake). As these turrets can retract and are commonly upgraded (even if not being converted to a Siyuihwye II class Pirate Ship), it is rarely possible to know if a given Siyuihwye is a combat threat (at least to another ACS or a smallcraft) unless and until it is actively engaged in combat. (Even if it runs away, its crew may have simply decided the present threat is not worth engaging.) When these turrets are upgraded, it is usually to beam lasers or pulse lasers that can be temporarily detuned into laser drills if and when it is time to mine.

If mining just about anything but the lowest-value common ores or carbonaceous materials, and if there is a buyer in the same system, it is usually possible to mine and deliver enough ore to make the ship's mortgage payments each month. Shipping freight will also do the job. Speculative trade is more lucrative but less dependable, so the Siyuihwye class was designed to support itself with mining or freight.

Most notably, despite being 300 tons, this ship can be crewed by a single individual. The drives and power plant are (barely) small enough that no dedicated engineer is needed, and there is software for the pilot and gunner positions (as well as a sensor operator, to assist if the ship is used for prospecting). Only an astrogator is necessary. As this is an Aslan ship, the astrogator is intended to be female - and without any male to be in charge (and need financial help), there is no need for a purser, any more than there is on a human ship.

The prospect of a female being alone and in charge of a starship, even if she is not doing male activities such as piloting and gunnery, explains why this ship class is almost never manufactured within the Aslan Hierate even without this class's history. It is also the origin of the ship's class name Siyuihwye, which translates from Trokh to Anglic as "Wandering Lady" or "Lady Who Wanders (for a living)". "Lady Traveller" is a popular, if technically less accurate, translation.

Image Repository[edit]

Not available at this time.

General Description & Deck Plans[edit]

  1. Deck Plans for this vessel.
    Siyuihwye deckplans.png

Basic Ship Characteristics[edit]

Following the Imperial Navy and IISS Universal Ship Profile and data, additional information is presented in the format shown here. [1]

Basic Ship Characteristics [2]
No. Category Remarks
1. Tonnage / Hull Tonnage: 300 tons (standard). 4200 cubic meters. Airframe Wedge Hull.
  • Dimensions: maximum 26 meters long by 30 meters wide by 10 meters tall.
2. Crew Crew: 1 Astrogator. 1 virtual Pilot, 1 virtual Sensor Operator, 3 virtual Gunners.
3. Performance Acceleration: 2-G maneuver drive installed.
  • Jump: 2. Can carry enough fuel for 2 jumps.
4. Electronics Model/2 ship computer.
5. Hardpoints 3 hardpoints.
6. Armament Three triple-mount laser drill turrets - thus, officially none, though many Siyuihwyes upgrade to weapons-grade lasers.
7. Defenses Heavy armor and high acceleration. The turrets are often upgraded to provide more defenses.
8. Craft None. Vacc suits required for EVA (extra-vehicle activity). Rescue Balls for crew escape normally carried.
9. Fuel Treatment It is normally equipped with a fuel purification plant and fuel scoops.
10. Cost MCr97.0935 standard (no architect's fees, those having been paid off before the Third Imperium existed). MCr87.38415 in quantity.
11. Construction Time 14 weeks standard, 10 in quantity.
12. Remarks A commercially viable Aslan {[Armored Trader]] created as cover for a pirate ship design, which has (officially) substantially outlived said pirate ship design.

History & Background (Dossier)[edit]

In -104, an Aslan pirate clan - its name lost to history - had been exiled from the Aslan Hierate and was operating in Reaver's Deep Sector. Without access to Aslan Hierate shipyards, it had to go to other - primarily human - shipyards. The best it was able to access at the time was TL-12. Unable to convince humans to construct purpose-built pirate ships, especially when said ships might be turned against the same worlds, the clan hatched a plan to make its ships in two parts.

The first part was a "legitimate" Armored Trader, easy to justify in the interstellar chaos of the Long Night. Although not the best trader ever, the design (after some iterations) was able to pass review as a competent Tramp Vessel. Like many Tramp Vessels, the resulting design was multipurpose, able to operate at a profit from belt mining, freight transport, or speculative trade. Of particular note was that the class was designed to be operated by a single female Aslan; most of the humans reviewing the design at the time noticed this, assumed that gender politics was the reason the clan had been exiled, and thus did not perform even a cursory background investigation that might have revealed the clan's piratical history.

It helped that the clan developed a marketing campaign, extolling the virtues of a lone female earning money for her family or to attract a wealthy mate, weaving in references to the trading practices of single-crew human ships. The design was made to support two crew, but the marketing literature emphasized this was for a friend or a non-reproductive love interest, such as preferring a human female to an Aslan male if no suitable Aslan female was available. (This was cover for having life support for two already present for those ships that would be upgraded into a Siyuihwye II class Pirate Ship, which needed an additional engineer.)

The second part was creation of upgrade kits, most often at Class B starports or Class F spaceports since these did not need to contain jump drives, that could easily be installed and convert a Siyuihwye into a Siyuihwye II class Pirate Ship (which was not recognized as a separate ship class at the time, just an "upgraded" Siyuihwye). These were more readily recognizable as something beyond a trader, but these were not complete spaceships on their own, and were usually manufactured in different systems entirely. That said, manufacture of the kits was more often off the record.

The plan worked well enough, and within two decades the clan had a modest fleet of pirate ships - their number limited by wealth, the clan easily able to spare the small all-female crews. The clan then made the unwise decision to move against the Aslan Hierate with a design that was seen as an affront to Aslan sensibilities. The Hierate responded by vigorously suppressing the clan for the next few decades, until their annihilation became a minor point in the Aslan Cultural Purge. All known members of the clan were killed, and all Siyuihwyes were either destroyed or seized and inspected, any kit-upgraded ones destroyed and their crews slain even if they were not clan members. Once that was done, the clan's name and as many details about it as possible were purged from all historical records the Aslan Hierate could get their hands on.

But while the humans were officially sympathetic (the truth was undoubtedly that they gave into intimidation on a topic they had no reason to care about), the Aslan Hierate only requested erasure of data about the clan. They did not ask for erasure of records of the trader ship itself - nor of blueprints of the upgrade kit. It is from these historical records the AAB was able to reconstruct the origin of this class.

While the idea of a lone female being in charge of a starship was repugnant to the post-Purge Aslan Hierate, it appealed to a number of racial Aslan who only shared tentative cultural connections - who considered themselves culturally Aslan enough to appreciate having a shrine on board and having "female" controls, but not enough to insist that a male must be in charge of any significant starship. This describes enough Aslan in and near Reaver's Deep Sector - and eventually Trojan Reach Sector, The Beyond Sector, and neighboring sectors - to sustain occasional construction of this ship class (and - despite Aslan Hierate protestations that this never happens - rarely of the upgrade kit).

Class Naming Practice/s & Peculiarities[edit]

Ship Interior Details (Peculiarities): Significantly for a trader class, about half of the ship's interior is a vast cargo hold. At the front of the lower deck is a cargo scoop, which doubles as the primary airlock. The entire cargo bay is serviced by a cargo crane, that can be summoned to any point in the bay; it is not unusual to grab on, stand on, or sit on the crane and ride it to somewhere else, especially points on the middle or upper deck that do not have catwalks or other things to stand on nearby. A large part of the cargo bay can be temporarily occupied by collapsible fuel tanks that store enough fuel for a second jump-2; the official cargo capacity is with these tanks fully collapsed.

The forward portion of the middle and upper decks is the main crew area, which can only be accessed from the cargo area by a pair of lifts near the front of the lower deck (though it has its own backup airlock for external access; there is another at the rear of the lower deck between the maneuver drives). This area includes a shrine to the crew's ancestors (a standard feature on Aslan ships), a small commons area, a stateroom (without the usual privacy walls since it is the only stateroom on board, though the fresher is still walled off) with a double bed instead of a bunk (to encourage taking a companion who is at least friendly - the marketing literature was not entirely propaganda on this point), and the main engineering area (the equivalent of a bridge) with two workstations up front.

The workstations only have "female" configurations. Humans find these a bit fancy but tolerable; Aslan Hierate males find these actively difficult to use, making this a minor security feature. (In theory a TL-13 version could install convertible terminals instead. There are notes suggesting this was one of the reasons to limit the design to TL-12, over and above the difficulty of finding TL-13 capabilities at the time.)

The three turrets are all "pop-up" designs, able to retract and hide when not in use. Two turrets lie alongside the cargo scoop; the third is on the upper deck, just behind the bridge. Only the upper turret contains a workstation - able to control the entire ship, though optimized for gunnery. Some 1-person crews prefer using this station to the ones at the bridge's front, so as to avoid the second console's constant reminder that they could have a second crewmember. There has been more than one instance where an Aslan Hierate crew assumed this meant the Siyuihwye operator was a female attempting to learn gunnery, and thus dishonorable enough to execute on the spot (in every such documented case, the Hierate crew was looking for an excuse to seize the ship).

Class Naming Practice/s: Siyuihwyes tend to be named for famous Aslan females, whose fame primarily derives from their own work rather than a male's. This leads to enough name reuse that names of heroines from other races (almost always one of the races of the shipyard crew - thus, most often human) are sometimes accepted instead.

Selected Variant Types & Classes[edit]

Merchant Vessel - (Armored Trader / Frontier Trader / Fast Trader):

  1. Type AA class Armored Merchant
    1. Jasper class Provincial Merchant
    2. Khoghue class Armed Junker
    3. Nguksu class Armoured Fast Trader
    4. Siyuihwye class Armored Trader
    5. Star class Armored Merchant
    6. Type RAX class Protected Merchant
    7. Venture class Frontier Trader

References & Contributors (Sources)[edit]

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